I love rollercoasters. Always have. The thrill of the climb, the sheer terror as I reach the top, then the complete exhilaration of that first drop and feeling so alive. The only downside is I’m 47 and I need a good trip to the chiropractor after I’m done.
My life, in retrospect, has felt a lot like a rollercoaster ride. A series of ups and downs, with certainly a good deal of highs, but unfortunately a decent amount of lows thrown in as well. There was a day a few years ago when I was feeling pretty down about where I was in my life and I made a decision to get off the rollercoaster.
You see, I spent way too many days waking up, having my breakfast, getting into my car to go to work and hoping I would have a good day. When I had a day where things went well, I felt good, and I had a good day. When things went poorly, I felt bad, and I had a bad day. I had no control of the daily trajectory of how things were unfolding and I was sick of it.
I made a decision that I was done observing my day and reacting to it, because it was getting me absolutely nowhere. To get off this rollercoaster, I was going to have to make some big changes, with the biggest of all being to take full responsibility for where I was in life. I went into a period of great study and began to really examine what the most successful people were doing that I wasn’t. It came down to two key differences – (1) the power of their thinking, and (2) their daily habits.
Your thoughts have tremendous power. So do your words. You don’t believe me? Think about a time where you’ve worried, and worried and worried about something and the very thing you worry about happens. Thought power is easily demonstrated when one carefully examines the habitual negative thoughts one has and then observes the results that follow.
Too often we hope to have a good day. Hope is a subtle illusion. It’s better than despair, but only slightly. Hope does not suggest anything more than a wish. And not all wishes come true. So wishing for a good day wasn’t radical enough a shift. I had to EXPECT a good day. And that’s when things began to change. Dr. Wayne Dyer once said, “When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” I had to set the tone for my day by expecting, no, by actually declaring the day I wanted. I actually say it out loud. I do this Tony Robbins bit in my office, programming my mind by declaring who I am and what I expect out of the day. I pump my fists in the air, get super fired up, pace around the room and get into the feeling of what I expect. My next door neighbor probably thinks I’m crazy, but this really does work.
Feeling supercharges an expectation and is so much more powerful than just making blanket statements. Statements without feeling have no creative power. Why? It’s about belief. If I really feel the statement, I am convincing myself on my deepest levels that it’s true. And when I’m convicted, that’s when I get the results I want.
So that’s what I do, and generally speaking my days unfold in alignment with my expectation. Not perfectly, but let’s just say that I have a much larger proportion of good days than I used to.
Set the tone for your day. Expect the good, get the good.